Graphic design is a creative process that involves everything we do today. From websites to application interfaces to product packaging, the talented hand of the graphic designer is seen everywhere. It can be a rewarding and challenging career. Here are some ideas to show you how to become a good graphic designer.
Learn the basics
- Choose a graphic design area
Before you can call yourself a graphic designer, you have to make some decisions. For example, are you interested in advertising, web development, multimedia (like the television industry), print design or animation? These can be considered different forms of graphic design. Reduce your focus to an area that appeals to you.
While graphic design is essentially the same in both, print and online, there are also key differences in resolutions, color space and other variables that are specific to the medium in which you want to focus. While you can certainly do both, it is best to focus on one to begin with.
- Acquire tools
Industry standard applications for graphic design are Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. (If you plan to go to perfection, Adobe Creative Suite complete includes Acrobat, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, Premiere, Photoshop, InDesign and After Effects). Although both applications are designed to be easy to use from the outset, you will require a lot of concentrated effort to master them.
These programs are not cheap. For starters, play with free alternatives like Gimp, Scribus, Inkscape and Pixlr.
- Buy textbooks
Concentrate on books that teach the basics of design, and then study as if you are taking a college course. Your reward will be to work on a career you love
- Take a graphic design course
It is not only to become an expert in programs like Photoshop and Illustrator, but to learn how to use these valuable tools in conjunction with developing a marketable design sense.
- Get involved with the design community
Practicing at home is a great safe way to learn how to design, but eventually, you will need to get feedback. Although it can be painful at first, keep your ego under control and take the advice seriously; the reward will be enormous. In addition, it is important to see what other people are doing to be exposed to more than one or two styles.
As with any business, networking is important in graphic design, especially if you plan to work freelance. It is important to make friends, stay in touch and be willing to learn to become a good graphic designer.
- Expand your education
Are you really interested in graphic design? Consider getting a degree. Academic training can be inspiring and networking with others in your field is always something positive. On top of that, many people will not hire a graphic designer without seeing some proof that he/she have been properly trained. Consider these options:
If you want a title that gives you credibility, but you do not have much time or money, associate with someone. You can acquire a two-year degree at a community college or business school. The emphasis will be more on computer skills than on art theory, but it is a good place to start.
If you want a degree with a little weight, get a bachelor’s degree. This is typically a four-year degree that can be acquired at a college or university. In addition to learning all the necessary computer skills, you will also be trained in art and design.
Are not you 100% sure that graphic design is your career? Get a bachelor of arts, not a bachelor of fine arts degree. This way, you can change the race more easily if you decide to continue with something else.